Clanfield Bells by davoakey



    Before the year 1653 one may conclude that there were only four
    bells in use. In that year four bells were taken down, and of the four
    five new bells were made. It is said that the recasting was done in
    Pound Close adjoining the churchyard. James Keene of Woodstock
    was the Bell-founder and John Saunders, Gent. appears to have paid
    the cost of recasting at least one bell. Some accident seems to have
    befallen one of these bells, as in the year 1696, when Richard May
    and Robert Robins were Churchwardens, one had to be recast. The
    five bells were hung in an oak frame, and for about 150 year
    summoned the parishioners to worship. In the year 1904, one of the
    bells having fallen from the headstock, only two bells were used until
    the following year, when it was decided that the bells ought to be re-
    hung in a steel frame. Such a liberal response was made to the
    appeal for help that it was possible to add three new bells to complete
    the octave, to have the old bells quarter-turned, re-tuned and fitted
    with new clappers and headstocks. The old clappers are kept in the
    tower hanging on the wall of the old ringing chamber. The work was
    entrusted to Messrs. John Taylor & Co. of Loughborough, the total
    cost being rather more than £300. On Monday August 14th 1905, the
    Bishop of Reading visited the parish for the purpose of dedicating the
    new bells. After the dedication service a peal of Stedman Triples,
    5040 changes , a variation of Thurston's Four part was rung by
    members of the Oxford Diocesan Guild of Ringers, conducted by the
    Rev. F.E. Robinson, the Master of the Guild. The screen to the the
    Ringing Chamber used to stand in the vestry until the choir stalls and
    vestry fittings were erected in 1906. It was finally completed and
    glazed in 1907. A chair for the sanctuary was made out of oak taken
    from the old bell frame. Sally guides were added in 1908 at a cost of
    about £4. The first peal, Grandsire Triples, 5040 changes, Holts 10
    part - to be rung by a band of Clanfield ringers was on November
19th 1907. The ringers were :
 William Farmer                 Treble
F W Farmer                        2
G Clarke                          3
S Eeles                           4
F Messenger                       5
H Wheeler                         6
T E Knapp                         7
Walter Clack                    Tenor

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